World's priciest real estate? Perhaps it's Paris

One analysis finds the French capital has the highest real-estate cost per square foot. An analysis of luxury properties finds Hong Kong the most expensive.

By Teresa at MSN Real Estate Sep 28, 2011 1:12PM

We've all read stories about foreigners snapping up U.S. real estate we could never afford, classifying properties we see as expensive as bargains.


Compared with what they're paying at home, those $1,000-per-square-fo​ot condos may be a bargain, at least for some international buyers.

Credit Sesame, an online consumer-credit service, analyzed a variety of home price data and came up with a price per square foot for real estate in 34 cities around the world. The analysis found the most expensive real estate in Paris, where the average price per square foot is $3,287. The cheapest real estate was in Santiago, Chile, at $160 per square foot. The median price

was $890 per square foot, or what you'd pay in Athens, Greece.


In the U.S. cities it analyzed, Credit Sesame found the highest price was in New York, where real estate is $1,069 per square foot. The lowest price was in Houston, at $54. The median price was $158, and you can find that in Chicago. You can see other U.S. and world cities on a chart.

If you want to see how your city compares, Zillow lets you calculate the price per square foot several ways. Looking at metro areas and sale prices over the past five years, we came up with a high of $398 per square foot in Honolulu and a low of $56 per square foot in Ocala, Fla. Not all metros were included in the analysis. Looking at the entire New York metro area, the price per square foot for homes was $231.

Exactly where homes are most expensive, of course, depends upon which homes you include in your statistical analysis. Are you talking city center or suburbs, where property is often cheaper? Are you including all home sales, or only those that meet certain criteria? Are distressed properties included?

Savills, a global real-estate company, looked only at luxury homes in 10 world capitals. Its analysis concluded that Hong Kong had the most expensive luxury real estate, at $10,316 per square foot. Savills found a luxury flat in Paris costs $5,035 per square foot, ranking the city third most expensive. Tokyo, at $7,991 per square foot, was second.

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